More Food Manufacturers Are Adopting Industry 4.0 Through Made Smarter

The program helps businesses increase their productivity and growth using digital tools. Small and medium-sized manufacturers across industries have secured £ 4.6million in matching funding for 241 projects, worth £ 16million after private sector investment.

The government-funded, industry-led initiative said the 200-company milestone was reached in part through engagement from food and beverage manufacturers.

Among the latest wave of manufacturers to use the technology to benefit their businesses were: Ennerdale Brewery, a craft beer maker in Rowrah; Ice Cream from the English Lakes at Kendal; and Firstplay Dietary Foods, a manufacturer of low protein products in Stockport.

Fitzpatrick Bourne Flexible, which makes filter materials for pyramid tea bags in Rossendale; Morrow Brothers, a brewery container repair and refurbishment specialist in Chorley; Mantle Packaging Machinery, a manufacturer of food packaging machinery in Clitheroe; and CoolKit, a specialty manufacturer of temperature-controlled vehicles in Burnley, had also benefited.

business case

Earlier this year it was revealedThis fabulous Flyde Fresh potato grower, chocolate maker Ye Olde Friars, and Classic Desserts cake and pudding maker were some of the latest companies to sign up for the Northwest’s Made Smarter adoption program.

Kendal-based Kendal Nutricare, which makes nutrition products including infant formula and baby cereal, used Made Smarter’s digital internship program to prove the business case for employing a data analyst to harness the value of data collected in their plant.

Grant Remington, Head of Projects and Contracts at Kendal Nutricare, said: “The internship through Made Smarter was a great success. It analyzed the data from our site highlighting areas for improvement. Made Smarter then helped us invest in a data and systems project for a new ERP system. to control the site, monitor stock levels and give the business a richer way of forecasting, which we have started to involve.

Dewlay cheese makers

Garstang-based Dewlay Cheesemakers has invested in a new ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system to manage all of its factory processes including purchasing, sales, BOM, production planning. It introduced touch screens and mobile scanners to manage the flow and use of inventory throughout the plant.

Ben Ardern, Financial Controller at Dewlay Cheesemakers, said: “This has allowed us to significantly improve our product traceability, as well as to have up-to-date production information and more accurate stock. The data captured also allows the company to better see the efficiency and yields of the plant.

“The funding from Made Smarter allowed the company to examine a wider range of product offerings and choose the system that best suits the business. Without it, and the uncertainty the pandemic has brought, the company might not have taken the plunge to make such a significant change. “

Increase efficiency

Small and mid-sized manufacturers across all industries who earned £ 4.6million have included technologies that integrate systems, capture and analyze data, and even create simulations of their factories and processes to increase performance. efficiency and reduce waste.

Meanwhile, 3D printing, automation, and robotics are being used to solve business challenges and meet growing demand.

These investments provide for the creation of 1,177 new jobs and 2,205 upgraded positions, and are expected to generate an additional Gross Value Added (GVA) of £ 192.9 million for the Northwest economy over the next three years. .

Launched in the northwest

Juergen Maier CBE, co-chair of Made Smarter, said: “We launched Made Smarter in the Northwest three years ago with the ambitious goal of launching a digital technology adoption program among small and medium-sized businesses, bolstered by leadership training and harnessing talent within universities.

“It is clear from the unequivocal success we are seeing in the North West and positive adoption programs in the West Midlands, Yorkshire and the Humber and the North East that we are starting to seize the multitude of opportunities that innovation and offers digital technologies.

“It is clear that for the UK manufacturing sector to thrive and become a global leader, we now need to deploy Made Smarter nationally and with stronger ambition. “

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